Residents Settle

Transfer of Driver's Licences from Certain Non-EU Countries (Listenstaaten)

Transferring a foreign driver’s licence is mandatory for anyone who wants to drive a car in Germany for more than six months. But there are slighter conditions for certain countries with which Germany has special agreements.

General information

International Hamburg residents from certain non-EU countries can transfer their driver’s licence into a German driver’s licence at the Bezirksämter Mitte and Nord, without having to take new theoretical driving tests. This only applies to official permanent driver’s licences from any of the countries on this list (German only).

People with driver’s licences from these countries may drive motor vehicles in Germany for a period of six months upon entry without official registration. After this period has expired, they must officially transfer their foreign driver’s licence into a German driver’s licence in order to continue driving.

After the application, the process may take up to six weeks to complete. Fees can range from €36.60 to €79.00 depending on the category of the driver’s licence, and are determined during the application process.

Things to keep in mind for your application

Please note the following before starting the application process:

  • This service is only available for people with driver’s licences from this list of countries.
  • The person holding the driver’s licence must be a registered resident of Hamburg.
  • This service is only available at the Bezirksämter Hamburg-Mitte and Hamburg-Nord.
  • Applicants must make an appointment in person.
  • Learners’ licences and other temporary licences cannot be transferred into a full German driver’s licence; this service only applies to full and official driver’s licences.
  • Your foreign driver’s licence must be valid when you apply for the transfer.
  • Your foreign driver’s licence can only be transferred if you have lived as a registered resident in the country that issued it for at least six months before acquiring the driver’s licence.
    This means that if, for example, if you acquired the license while on holiday abroad, the license cannot be transferred into a full German driver’s licence.

Prepare before application

Applicants will need the following documents in order to apply:

  • A personal ID card or passport stating your current place of residence
  • Your valid foreign driver’s licence;
    in some cases, it may be necessary to bring an official translation or classification provided by a sworn translator; whether or not this necessary will be determined individually during the application process
  • A biometric passport photograph 3.5 by 4.5 cm
  • The confirmation of your appointment

Depending on the country where the driver’s licence was issued, further documents may be required.

For the transfer of category C and D driver’s licences (for trucks and buses), applicants also need the following documents:

  • An certificate from an opthalmologist from within the last 24 months
  • A general medical certificate from within the last twelve months (category D only) – link to document
  • A criminal record certificate from within the last three months issued by your local Einwohnermeldeamt
  • If applicable, proof of a professional driver’s qualification for goods and/or passenger transport

Making an appointment

Appointments should be booked via the LBV:

  1. Visit the LBV appointment booking website; under the headline Führerschein (driver’s licence), select Umschreibung ausländischer Führerschein (transfer of foreign driver’s licences)
  2. Select the location closest to you to view the available appointments
  3. Choose an available appointment from the calendar
  4. Enter your name and email address to finish the booking process
  5. You will receive an email confirming that you have successfully booked an appointment

Please remember to bring the booking confirmation to the appointment.

Useful links and documents

LBV (Landesbetrieb Verkehr) Contact

LBV website for booking appointments

List of eligible non-EU countries

Validity of foreign driving licences in the Federal Republic of Germany